The Chairman of the Tour and Charter Division and some Committee Members met at Optus Stadium yesterday to discuss private bus arrangements at the Stadium. We met with Glenn Watson, Venueslive Stadium Park Event Manager. There is still a lot of construction going on with Multiplex still controlling access to the site. Works will continue into next year. Despite this, the Stadium really paints an impressive figure and will be a great asset once it is up and running and all the bugs have been ironed out.
The Stadium has transport constraints, both in and out, as it has been constructed on a Peninsular between two rivers and this is one of the reasons that 84% of patrons will be required to travel on public transport to and from the Stadium. There is extremely limited car parking and all parking will need to be authorised. Thirteen bus bays have been allocated to private buses on the northern side of Roger Mackay Drive between the PTA Bus Port and Victoria Park Drive. These bays are for layovers and primarily for country coaches.
There will be a requirement for an authorisation card to be displayed on the bus – no card, no layover. Passengers will have to walk from the bus bay area to the Stadium, a distance of about 200 metres. A footpath is currently being constructed. At this stage, BusWA believes that 13 bays is adequate but we will have to wait and see what happens as the AFL season starts. The administration of the cards is to be discussed more fully in the New Year. Glenn will be working closely with BusWA to come up with a workable and simple solution.
While the AFL parking seems to be organised (but not without challenges), it seems as if no thought whatsoever has been given to other special events such as concerts, live performances and the like. Currently, there is no provision for private buses to drop off or pick up at the Stadium.
Buses are part of the solution and this needs urgent attention as it will be total chaos if not resolved. Glenn made some suggestions that may work.
However, this problem needs fixing quickly and BusWA will be working closely with Optus Stadium to come up with a reasonable compromise. I will keep you informed through this Communiqué as events unfold.